RCMP officer accused in B.C. shooting death elects jury trial

Case of RCMP Constable Jason Tait has first hearing in 2015 shooting death of Waylon Jesse Edey.

The case of the Castlegar RCMP officer charged with manslaughter came before a judge for the first time on Monday.

Jason Tait, a West Kootenay Traffic Unit constable, is charged with manslaughter using a firearm in relation to the shooting of 29-year-old Waylon Jesse Edey during an attempted traffic stop near Castlegar on Jan. 29, 2015.

READ MORE: Constable charged in 2015 shooting

Tait’s lawyer, David Butcher, appeared before the court on his behalf.

Tait elected for a trial by jury and requested the proceedings take place in front of a judge from outside of the West Kootenay. Both requests were granted by Judge Philip Seagram.

Butcher also requested a preliminary inquiry.

“Given the unusual nature of the charge and the seriousness of it, I am going to want to conduct a full preliminary inquiry,” he said.

Tait’s next appearance will be June 14 to fix a date for the inquiry with the condition that the defence files a statement of issues and witnesses before that date.

The charges came more than three years after the incident and after a lengthy investigation by the Independent Investigation Office, B.C.’s police watchdog.

READ MORE: IIO Investigation into Castlegar incident in final stages

READ MORE: Man fatally shot by RCMP had a history of impaired driving

Castlegar RCMP and West Kootenay Traffic Services had been responding to a complaint of an impaired driver in the Castlegar area.

Police eventually located the suspect driving west on Highway 3 on the Kinnaird Bridge in south Castlegar.

According to court documents, Tait had pulled over, gotten out of his cruiser on foot, and tried to get the driver to pull over.

The driver did not stop, but hit the police cruiser. Then, Tait fired his service pistol.

Edey was taken to hospital, but did not survive.

His mother, Deborah Edey, has also filed a civil lawsuit against Tait, alleging the use of deadly force was unwarranted.

She and another relative were present for Monday’s court appearance.

READ MORE: Mother of Waylon Edey sues RCMP officer

Just Posted

Port Alice trailer goes up in flames in the early morning hours

The North Island Gazette will continue to update the story with more details as it progresses.

1041 customers without power due to outages in Northern Vancouver Island

Keep following the North Island Gazette for more on the power outages.

VIDEO: Sports Talk with Tyson: North Island Bantam Eagles are ready for provincials

Sports Talk with Tyson is back this week with an indepth look at the North Island Bantam Eagles.

Ferry connecting Port Hardy and Bella Coola expected to set sail this summer

Its first in-service route will sail in central coast waters on May 18, 2019.

Thunderbird movie films in downtown Port Hardy

A film crew of approximately 30-40 people has shut down part of Market Street in Port Hardy.

VIDEO: Students in MAGA hats mock Native American at Indigenous Peoples March

Diocese in Kentucky says it is investigating the matter, caught on video by onlookers

Want to avoid the speculation tax on your vacant home? Rent it out, Horgan says

Premier John Horgan and Sheila Malcolmson say speculation and vacancy tax addresses homelessness

CONSUMER REPORT: What to buy each month in 2019 to save money

Resolve to buy all of the things you want and need, but pay less money for them

UPDATE: B.C. woman and boy, 6, found safe, RCMP confirm

Roseanne Supernault says both she and her six-year-old nephew are fine and she has contacted police

PHOTOS: Women’s Marches take to the streets across B.C. and beyond

Women and allies marched worldwide protesting violence against women, calling for equality

Mowi reassures RDMW future of aquaculture industry in wake of historic announcement last month

Mowi anticipates a plethora of opportunities in other areas of the North Island for economic growth.

Anxiety in Alaska as endless aftershocks rattle residents

Seismologists expect the temblors to continue for months, although the frequency has lessened

Women’s March returns across the U.S. amid shutdown and controversy

The original march in 2017, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, drew hundreds of thousands of people

Federal Liberals announce former B.C. MLA as new candidate in byelection

Richard Lee will face off against federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh

Most Read